I'm watching a lot of stuff from a couple days ago and trying to catch up. But there are a few things worth mentioning.
A lot has been made about the Jamaican sprinters and that's just playing the meta game. Bolt is the real deal, and a proper champion. I have to say that no matter how many swimming medals Michael Phelps wins, it always feels to me as if swimming just hasn't matured. When there are still 15 year olds breaking world records and three or four athletes dominating the sport years on end, I get the feeling that there's a great deal more evolution for the sport. Bolt is a much more phenomenal star than Phelps. He makes you think about what we've never seen yet in the sport. I must say that I've always liked tall sprinters rather than the short, juiced-up ones. I take Linford Christie over Ben Johnson. And so Bolt is the evolution of Christie, a stronger Christie, and I think he sets the standard for the new class of sprinters future.
It took long enough to make the Badminton look interesting. I've had to fast forward through more hours of badminton than I ever have in life to witness the men's singles final at long last. All the way to the wire there was drama and the tightest competition between the world's number one and number two. The Chinaman was finally victorious over the Malaysian.
Women's Beach VB
Is this all USA vs China? I have to say that the women's beach volleyball this year has been more exciting than the men's. Not just because Rogers and Dalhauser failed before the Italians, but that the play has just been more riveting with May's team. A lot of crazy digs and bootleg plays have made the games quite stunning, and the Chinese women fought until the end.
Lolo, Gabby, Dawn & The Image
Two ends of the spectrum in the meta game. On the one hand, Gabby wins her events in style with a bit of grace for one so young, but gets destroyed in the press. Now people are telling her to control her image. The total flip-side is that Lolo Jones can't win for losing and the press and sponsors have and continue to love her. But let's face it, Lolo has the ripped torso a zillion women and men want and she's got an elegance that almost no other female athlete at the games possesses. She's got a compelling story and she's got polish. Gabby on the other hand reminds you of Sandy Cheeks from Spongebob. She's all spunky and clunky - and what a name. Gabby - perfect for the post-balletic twirlers of the modern Olympics, all- wrist braces and chalky and feet that pound clunk after the double pikes. There's no getting around that acrobatics have ruined much of women's gymnastics - the tumbling routines are as routine as breakdancing headspins. What did we ever really see in all that?
Now that Lolo has her second non-medal event (four is the lonliest Olympic number) I hope she stays popular, because I like her, genuinely. Gabby, if she can grow up normally - as if any American female gymnast could, should be back in Rio. Until then she'll have to defend herself from the sorts of Hollywood & marketing types that create and destroy. Somebody is going to drop a gold brick on her doorstep.
Dawn Harper reminds me of one of my first girlfriends. No matter what kind of gold lay in her heart, she could never transcend her hood-ratly appearance. Not that Dawn is unattractive or improperly ghetto, it's just that she got that Jamie-Lee Curtis hardbody that dudes kinda like and kinda fear at the same time. I also bet that she's just too cocky to shutup about beating Lolo, no matter how gracious she tries to smile for the camera. I like that in a champion, and I think she and Deion Sanders would make a perfect couple. But it took Deion a long time to be accepted as a champion and I don't think Dawn will get enough time in the sun to make any mistakes. But that's what happens to the overwhelming majority of American Olympians, win or lose.
It seems that the only way to gain any permanent respect is to become a coach, and considering what has been said about Bob Kersee, that's not much of a bright prospect. How can we make Track & Field a better profession?